September 10- Encapsulation Deliberation

Given that my entire pregnancy happened due to alternative treatments and supplements, it's no surprise that when I hear of an alternative/modern approach to postpartum and raising kids I'm naturally intrigued. As the months fly by (all with too much time on my hands) I spend a lot of time researching things to be better prepared and more knowledgeable as a mother. Some of the things I've been on board with since day one and others I continue to research before making my decision one way or another. All of which are incredibly interesting and whether or not I decide to go with any or all of them, I am that much more well informed than before.

Rather than bombard you with a plethora of different topics all at once, I'll go with one for now. And I won't lie, it's one that makes me squeamish....

It all started with a good friend of mine who is also pregnant, about 6 weeks ahead of me. Her and I have always been on the same page when it comes to most things, especially having a holistic approach to life. We eat clean, take yoga together and are big advocates for eliminating toxins from our bodies and lives in general. But when she told me she would be encapsulating her placenta to take as a pill after giving birth, I thought that was going a bit too far off the deep end of the hippie pool for even me. I dismissed it and put it in the back of my mind. But then something crazy happened. All of a sudden I started hearing about it in all sorts of places. My pregnancy forum, the Fit Pregnancy magazine I read, on the news, and from other friends who apparently took it after they gave birth as well. So of course being the information seeker that I am, I have scoured the Internet far and wide to find out more about it. And to be honest, the more I learn and hear about it, the more intrigued I am and the less crazy it seems...

For one, it has been used in Traditional Chinese Medicine for hundreds of years. TCM is the very reason I was able to get pregnant in the first place so I trust Eastern Medicine practices more than anything. That being said, it's the amazing benefits that have me leaning toward going for it. It has been shown to help balance your hormones, replace depleted iron levels, assist the uterus to return to its pre-pregnancy state, reduce post-natal bleeding, increase milk production (which is good if you are breast feeding), increases your energy levels and makes for a happier, more enjoyable post-natal period. Well that sure sounds worth it to me! I mean, we're not talking about making a sandwich out of it, the only part I would see are little pills. Doesn't seem too terribly bad...

So while the concept initially grossed me out (and to be honest still does) I feel the benefits outweigh the ick factor. Hey, as long as I don't have to see or touch the placenta itself, it's all good. From what I understand I would just need to bring a cooler to the hospital during delivery and then bring that to the midwife who will be doing the encapsulation. I'm going to a birthing center with a friend of mine next week to be there with her while she does her glucose test, so I figure I can talk to the midwife about the process then. One thing I want to know is with me having twins, would they just pick one placenta or the combination platter? (Yuck! LOL. Sends shivers down my spine). But all queasiness aside, if this is something that will truly benefit me in the long run, then I am all about having a faster, healthier recovery after child birth!